Monday, 13 August 2012

Team GB Versus the SNP

Team GB has excelled itself over the last few weeks and, as many people stated before and during the Olympics closing ceremony, Team GB represented more than just the athletes.

70,000 volunteers, many of whom came from overseas to help. Many more of whom came from Northern Ireland, Wales, and even Scotland.

In my home town of Cumbernauld, situated smack bang in the middle of Scotland's Central Belt, I've seen children and adults alike sporting the Team GB logo on the high street and in the supermarkets. The Scottish flag has been prominently displayed everywhere - as part of the Union Flag logo...

Britain is four separate nations, but together - we are Great!

This year the SNP gave a commitment to seeking Scottish independence from Great Britain. I was born in Scotland, to Scottish parents. I've never been convinced by the arguments for independence.

There is a universal truth - it applies from the atomic level up to the superstructure of galaxies - united we stand, divided we fall.

The only justifiable reason I can see for Scotland wanting more independence - or even total independence - is in being able to decide our own fate. Yet this year the SNP completely ignored a majority of Scots during the consultation on changing the definition of Marriage. If independence means the SNP and those who follow have Carte Blanche to ignore the will of the Scottish people then the political system Scotland is headed for is more akin to dictatorship than democracy.

For me, Mo Farah has defined the 2012 Olympics. A Somali refugee when he arrived at age 8, one who struggled to learn English, he has been accepted as a British citizen and runs for Team GB.

GB does not have a great track record when it comes to accepting and integrating refugees and others who wish to work or live here. I still frequently hear complaints about there being no jobs for locals but foreigners seem to find work.

I worked abroad myself so find it difficult to understand why, when Scots have frequently left home to find work, we resent others doing the same and coming here.

Scotland benefits from cultural diversity. Scotland benefits from new blood coming in and expanding our horizons. Scotland benefits from the Welsh, Northern Irish and English who choose to come and live here, just as these nations benefit from the Scots who choose to live there.

The only reason I can see for the SNP and others wanting Scottish independence is a deep, ingrown resentment towards the English for past wrongs. The anger started hundreds of years ago with successive English conquests and has been fueled up to present day by 'perceived' English governments treating Scotland as an experimental laboratory for failed political policies. Yes, people North of the Border still resent the poll tax!

Resentment and anger is not a good foundation for a new beginning.

If we, if Scotland - as a nation - can grow up and learn to forgive the English for past and perceived wrongs, then I hope we can also see the great benefits of staying part of a community that I believe has benefitted us more than harmed us over the Centuries.

I look forward to the debates over the coming months but unless there are some genuine and forceful arguments to the contrary - I vote to remain united. I am for Team GB!

No comments:

Post a Comment